Our bodies naturally produce various hormones to help us with our day-to-day functioning. This page provides a background to these everyday and the ways in which we can use our body’s natural mechanisms to our own advantage.
Main Natural Bodily Hormones:
• Endorphins (the “Stress Regulator” Hormone), • Dopamine (the“Feel-Good” Hormone),
• Oxytocin (the “Love” Hormone),
Endorphins are chemicals produced by the body which are released to relieve pain and reduce stress by creating a euphoric feeling.
In short, Endorphins are released when you:
• are injured
• Experience stress
• Activate your natural reward system (by eating, doing exercise, having sex, etc.)
The best ways to encourage your body to naturally release endorphins include:
• Regular exercise (any form of exercise will do, but exercising in a group is even better)
- Go Outdoors
- Creating music or art
- Have a glass of Red wine
• Enjoy your favourite meal • Get a massage
• take a sauna
• Eat Spicy Food
• Eat Dark Chocolate • Giving to others
• Take a hot bath
• Having sex
• Endorphin release is linked to continuous exercise.
• Moderate-intensity exercise may be best (But, HIIT is linked to increasing other hormones such
as Serotonin and Dopamine)
• Studies have shown that group exercise may also give you a better endorphin boost.
Meditation: Meditation can help you relax and achieve an inner sense of calm. It can also offers other health benefits, including:
• improved physical wellness
• improved mood
• heightened immune system and increased ability to cope with illness • better sleeping cycles
Enjoy a Massage: Massage therapy is fantastic at helping relieve stress whether it is to improve symptoms of some physical health concerns, such as chronic pain and fatigue, it also helps us have a better connection with our bodies.
Treat Yo’ self: Whether an occasional treat or enjoyed regularly, indulging in chocolate has been linked to endorphin production and the promoting feelings of bliss. If chocolate isn’t what you’re after, enjoy a glass of red wine instead! You can also get an endorphin boost by drinking a glass of red wine and enjoy the same benefits of eating dark chocolate. If you’re not sure which one to try, why not enjoy them both?
Get some Sun: Sunlight has more than one health benefit to offer, the UV radiation in sun can also help to boost your endorphin levels. It helps your skin produce vitamin D, an essential nutrient. It also boosts production of serotonin and melatonin, which can help improve your mood, increase your energy, and help you get better sleep.
Have Sex: That euphoric feeling you feel during sex? You can thank your endorphins and other hormones, such as oxytocin, for that.
Surging endorphins may help explain why sex offers other benefits beyond making you feel good, such as:
• pain relief
• reduced stress
• improved self-esteem
Dopamine plays a role in how we feel pleasure. It’s a big part of our unique human ability to think and plan. Dopamine regulates our brain’s Reward system.
As well as regulating body movement, Dopamine is an essential cognitive hormone that influences our mood and feelings of reward and motivation.
Dopamine is Responsible for:
• Heart rate
• Blood vessel function • Kidney function
Ways to Naturally Increase Dopamine: • Get enough sleep
• Exercise regularly
• Consume Probiotics
• Control of nausea and vomiting • Pain processing
• Listening to Music
• Get Enough Sunlight
• Consume Supplements
• Eating Velvet Beans- this super-food naturally contains high levels of L-dopa, the precursor
molecule to dopamine.
Often referred to as the “Love hormone”, Oxytocin is associated with feelings of trust, empathy, sexual activity and impacts our relationship building skills. Generally woman have higher levels of Oxytocin than males as this hormone also plays a vital role in child-birth and breast-feeding.
Oxytocin is produced in the hypothalamus; in short, it is released: • During sex,
• and to aid reproductive functions.
The physical and psychological effects of this hormones massively impact our social behaviour and emotions. It is associated with bonding behaviour, this includes this social recognition, creating group memories and other social functions. This bonding behaviour may be between from parent to child, between partners or in a platonic sense.
Studies find that individuals in the first stages of romance have higher oxytocin levels than people who are single. The high levels of this hormone are shown to persist for at least a 6 month period.
Increased levels of Oxytocin are associated with: • Less stress and Anxiety;
• Depression symptom relief;
• Better sleeping patterns;
• an Overall improved quality of life
There are several ways to naturally boost Oxytocin Levels:
• Listening to music- This has a plethora of advantages from improving your moods, focus and
motivation as well as aiding our ability to create social bonding which again is strongly associated with Oxytocin which is another good reason to put on your favourite tunes!
• Strengthen your emotional connections with others– Tell someone how much you care can increase feeling of appreciation on both sides, we often take our thoughts and feelings for granted, vocalising their positive emotions to the people we care about is a great way of reinforcing these feelings and naturally raising our Oxytocin levels.
• Spend time with friends- The good feeling that is associated with spending time with family or friends is most likely the work of Oxytocin. Spending time with friends is a great way to feel more positive about your interactions and making you want to spend more time together. Studies have also found that feeling of trust and affection are more likely to increase when you share the same company more often.
- Cook or Eat with someone you care about
- Meditation– Regular meditation not only aids with the reductions of stress, it improves your mood and help you feeling more compassionate not just towards other but to yourself. • Have meaningful conversations– Active listening and empathic social skills are foundational to how we interact with others and build relationship. Whether this is by checking up on your friends are feeling or reaching out to others to demonstrate that you care, showing the people in your circles that you are thoughtful is a fantastic way of getting an Oxytocin booster. • Have sex– Sexual intimacy is often heralded as being one of the key ways of demonstrating affection for other and naturally increasing Oxytocin in the body. An additional advantage of this is that it raises the levels of both you and your partner. • Cuddling and Hugging– Sexual triggers for releasing Oxytocin are not the only way to boosting your level, any form of physical intimacy may trigger similar effects. This may be seen with activities such as hugging, cuddling and even hand holding. The same may be said for receiving or giving a massage.
Serotonin impacts every part of your body, from your emotions to your motor skills. Serotonin is considered a natural mood stabiliser as well as aiding us with sleeping, eating, and digesting.
Found primarily in your stomach and intestines, Serotonin aids with bowel movements and functioning. Furthermore, Serotonin found in the brain is thought to regulate anxiety, happiness, and influence our mood. There are strong connections between low levels of Serotonin and m In too high a quantity, Serotonin is thought to be a cause of low libido, whereas in too low a quantity of Serotonin is thought to be responsible for conditions such as depression.
Additional functions of Serotonin:
• reduces depression
• regulates anxiety
• heal wounds
• stimulates nausea
• maintains bone health– Significantly high levels of serotonin in the bones can lead to osteoporosis, which makes the bones weaker.
• Sleeping– This hormones is responsible for stimulating the parts of the brain that control sleep and waking.
• Detoxifier– As well as impacting our mood, Serotonin also has the ability to detoxify our bodies and is responsible for creating a nauseating feeling that causes us to expel whatever has our body upset.
As you can see there are many activities which may stimulate or release more than one of these fantastic hormones that our bodies naturally produce. These include such activities as Yoga, Listening to Music, Eating food and so on, why not try and kill two birds with one of these activities? As the information in the post demonstrates, the benefits of boosting our levels of these wonderful hormones are evident and provides direct advantages to us living our lives.